Advantages of the Calculate component

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The Abacus, one of the earliest examples of a portable calculator, would have assisted the ancients with many of the same calculations that construction, commercial, industrial and small businesses rely on today. We all remember the abacus from early education. Can we picture the Roman builder, architect or merchant making calculations on the ground to assist in quantity surveying, building programmes, architecture, engineering and all kinds of other business. 

Fast forward to modern day, the handheld calculator, well, it's ok if you have pen, paper and other things to hand. Nowadays the calculator in business is being replaced in favour of instant online smart device technology just as the abacus would have reduced the time required for calculating in Roman numerals. The ability to make simple and complex calculations on the ground and in real time will assist enterprises in time management and cost effectiveness. 

Making calculations in the field can benefit all kinds of business. Complex calculations will be used in construction, quantity surveying, or perhaps for assessing company profit/revenue. Warehouse and storage facilities may wish to evaluate storage space and conditions as well as provide figures for stock management and rotation.

The NestForms mobile survey app provides a calculate component that administrators can embed into a form so that responders on the ground can include any mathematical information required for a job or project. This component allows for precise calculation using addition, subtraction, multiplication or division of any numerical information. In marketing or retail, percentages may need to be calculated or in construction and quantity surveying, measurements taken for internal and external areas. Distances may need to be calculated between GPS points on a map. Using the calculate component, an administrator is able to specify how the calculation is formulated so that the responder on the ground only has to input the relevant figures.

Let's take a look at some of the occasions where you might consider making some simple and complex calculations within your business using this effective component.

Health and Safety and COVID 19 monitoring
Aside from the tragic and huge loss of life throughout the world, COVID 19 has thrown up many challenges for the employment sector. It's not just the employment sector and the workplace though is it? In many instances members of the public are being asked to test or in other ways comply with COVID restriction guidance simply for businesses or industries to operate. One of the ways in which the calculate component has been used by employers is when temperature checks are required to be taken from staff entering the workplace or other premises. Temperature checks may also be required from members of the public to access events, sports grounds and other premises. An administrator can use the calculate component to include a temperature range. Using a trigger embedded within the calculation formula enables responders on the ground to see immediately if a person is outside the normal temperature range.

Shipping and Transportation
This is an area where many complex calculations may be required for the movement and storage of all types of goods whilst in transit to destinations locally or worldwide. This might involve the numbers of containers or other storage methods needed for goods consignments. Precise weights and measurements are equally important for shipping, air freight, road haulage and other forms of transport. Weights of containers may be required for transport safety and regulation. Consignments may need to comply with regulations set by the receiving port authorities or regional government requirements. Health and Safety regulation will apply for storage and transportation. The NestForms calculate component allows for responders in the field to input weights and measurements so that calculations can be viewed by administrators straightaway for the purpose of monitoring, safety and compliance.

Asset Management
An asset manager will need to make calculations with regards to storage space or perhaps for the weight of any consignments of equipment or other goods before transportation. Again, government regulation needs to be complied with in order for smooth transit. For the asset management company it is important to know both the distance travelled for the movement of goods as well as the time taken from A to B. The NestForms mobile survey app calculate component allows companies to gather and calculate figures efficiently for weightage, storage space, distances travelled using GPS coordinates and times taken for transit journeys.

With regard to calculating the distance from A to B, the calculate component ‘distance function’ computes the length of the shortest possible path through space, between two points, that can be completed if there were no obstacles.

The distanceTravel function computes the length of a specific path travelled between two points, such as the distance walked for example, while navigating a maze. It accepts exactly two parameters of the GPS component type.

This function is not available in the mobile app and therefore cannot be used for number logic. The calculate component also allows for the calculation of time taken for travelling from one point to another. The timediff function calculates the difference between two time or datetime values.

Human Resources
The people who make up a company or business are the most important asset in terms of production, health and profitability of an organisation. Large and small businesses who invest in management, resources and training benefit greatly in the long term where staff retention and job satisfaction is concerned. Monitoring workplace trends, habits and time management contribute to a productive and streamlined working environment. With regards to time management some companies are using the NestForms mobile survey app to evaluate the time taken for various activities in the office, the factory floor or any other employment area.

The Calculate component can be used by human resource officers to gauge the exact amount of time taken, for example, time spent with workplace mentors, training, breaks, display screen time among many other activities that make up the working week. A formula can be created by the administrator that will total up times taken for any chosen task to give an overview for human resource management. Forms shared to Section heads or team leaders mean that they simply have to input times taken for tasks.

The formula as created by the administrator means that the calculate component will total up the times taken for separate tasks. Determining how workplace time is used or I suppose in some cases abused greatly assists with human resource management.

Workplace Audits
During workplace audits, companies and businesses can use the calculate function within the NestForms platform to gauge how well an area or section of the business is performing in relation to meeting targets as set down by management or perhaps performance with regard to statutory regulation. Administrators can compile a set of questions assigning a grading scale, let’s say for example 0 - 10 which means that once the questions are calculated, the overall grade can be assigned to the audit. The resulting score based on the earlier answers will explain to the auditor if a target or performance indicator has been excelled, achieved or missed.

There will be many occasions where complex calculations will be required for construction purposes. Site surveyors from the outset will be working with large and small scale measurements, distances and time frames. On the construction site, managers and foremen are taking all kinds of measurements relating to the project. Materials required to complete work need to be ordered and costed.

The calculate component assists project managers in gauging the cost simply by responders inputting figures, amounts or measurements whilst working onsite. Quantity surveyors will be constantly making complex calculations to determine the amount of materials needed and to evaluate cost. For a row of timber framed houses to be erected calculations are made for the amount of wood required on site. Making calculations on the construction site is saving both time and money, the most important factors in the trade.

Innovations such as Smart trawl technology are now being used to understand volume catches, overfishing and the identification of bycatch areas. I'm not pretending to be a fisheries expert here but I've read enough to know that ‘discard’ is a big problem. A company or agency monitoring fish stocks in a certain region within a specific time frame or season can use the calculate function within the NestForms mobile survey app for evaluation, forecasting and showing the total weights of any landed catch. An administrator can make up and share a form to pilots or other personnel so that catch weights can be entered quickly using a mobile device from onboard.

The company may wish to know the total number of tows that had to be undertaken in order to arrive at the weights specified by the responder. Calculations might involve returning numbers and weight of any specific catch. Other figures obtained might also include measurements for storage and transportation of stock. Complex and simple calculations assist agencies in the tracking and protection of fish stocks. The close monitoring of figure returns and subsequent calculations also assist with forecasting for future operations.

These are just some examples of where the mobile survey app can be of use with regards to making simple and complex calculations to support your business.

On the calculate help page you can view a comprehensive list of the functions and operations embedded within the calculate component.  

You can find out more about the NestForms mobile survey app on the NestForms website. You can also view a short video on how the app works on the homepage.

You can also learn more on how to use our calculate component by viewing the help page.

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